National Writing Project

Location, Location, Location: A Way into Descriptive Writing

By: Ray Skjelbred
Publication: The Quarterly, Vol. 18, No. 4
Date: Fall 1996

Summary: Skjelbred provides strategies to sharpen "location writing," ways to understand the importance of small detail, to choose words for accuracy and sensory impact, to avoid quick subjective judgments about what we see.



I had hoped we could find five minutes to write before the storm actually hit, some quiet time for a new understanding: something about motion or light or shading or sound, maybe a memory recalled or perhaps an observation of how our earthly places respond to the mystery of wind. Or most importantly, how a particular part of the world had become a different place from the last time students had written about it, either because they had changed or because the place had changed. But the storm hits earlier than expected, and very quickly a group of wet, laughing eighth-graders run back into the classroom.... And then almost every hand shoots up. They all want to read aloud even though most of their writing had ended abruptly.

Download the Article

PDF Download "Location, Location, Location: A Way into Descriptive Writing"

Related Resource Topics

© 2020 National Writing Project